CEO Monthly July 2017

20 CEO MONTHLY / JULY 2017 , DDI’s ‘Challenging Thinking’ series brings fresh, innovative vision and solutions to the rapidly-evolving leadership landscape. DDI Launches Bold New Series Challenging Thinking about Leadership To date, DDI has released five pieces in the Challenging Thinking series: ‘Can Today’s Millennial Leaders Become Tomorrow’s Great CEOs?’ by Richard Wellins, Ph.D. and Rebecca Ray, Ph.D.: All CEO positions will eventually be held by Millennials. When their time comes to lead, will they be ready? Based on the study, ‘Divergent Views/Common Ground: The Leadership Perspectives of C-Suite Executives and Millennial Leaders’ from DDI, The Conference Board and RW2 Enterprises, it’s clear that Millennial leadership will bring about change, but perhaps in a different way than many people have assumed. ‘Are We Underselling the Promise of Women in STEM Leadership Roles?’ by Stephanie Neal and Audrey Smith, Ph.D.: It’s well- documented that the number of women in STEM fields are going in the wrong direction, despite there being more evidence than ever supporting the case for having more women in leadership. But women may be uniquely hard-wired to lead in STEM, regardless of their technical backgrounds. There’s no bigger barrier to business success than a leadership team that makes decisions based on the reasoning that: ‘We’ve always done it that way.’ This attitude of stagnant leadership has never been a bigger risk than in today’s rapidly changing business environment that demands agility for survival. To help leaders and organisations broaden their perspectives to adapt their leadership strategy to these new demands, DDI has launched ‘Challenging Thinking.’ This thought leadership series questions conventional wisdom, dispels myths and proffers innovative new ideas designed to change the way people think about leadership. Comfort is the enemy of growth,’ said Tacy Byham, CEO of DDI. “In the rapid pace of today’s business environment, the vast majority of organisations are desperate to quickly grow their leaders to ensure they are ready to take on tomorrow’s challenges. Our new ‘Challenging Thinking’ series is designed to help leaders grow by pushing them out of their comfort zone, enabling them to make better decisions about which outdated practices to throw out, which innovative ideas to adopt, which tried-and-true practices to keep and which fads are unsupported by science.” ‘Could Siri Become Your Leadership Coach?’ by Mike Hoban: Artificial intelligence (AI) bots make excellent personal assistants, reminding you of your appointments, making a dinner reservation or rapidly researching the answer to any question. But as AI rapidly progresses, could these bots begin to understand the nuance of human behaviour, eventually being able to help guide you in how to handle complicated relationships at work? In other words, could a bot such as Apple’s Siri soon become your leadership coach? ‘Is There a Flow State of Leadership?’ by Evan Sinar, Ph.D.: Being busy is not the same as being productive. For leaders to be truly productive, they need to achieve a state of “flow,” in which someone is completely immersed in an activity that takes all their concentration. But with all the distractions of the daily work world, leaders are struggling more than ever to achieve this state. ‘What if New Leaders RanYour Company for a Year?’ by Liza Hummel: In many organisations, their go-to “A-team” for solving problems consists of people with the longest tenure at the company. But while these leaders’ knowledge is valuable, continually relying on those with experience doesn’t breed fresh, innovative ideas. Instead, imagine what might happen to innovation if all-new leaders ran your company for a year. DDI will continue to release new pieces every few weeks. Anyone who would like to ask questions or participate in the conversation about innovative thinking on leadership can join DDI on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn using #DDIChallengingThinking. To find out more information about DDI’s leadership expertise, visit